Braille Monitor                                               November 2013

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News from the Federation Family

Bid for Equality:
Our Bid for Equality online auction is fast approaching. If you have not already done so, please visit <> to pre-register. Pre-registering on <> will ensure you are ready to bid as soon as the auction goes live. To preview our exciting donations prior to the auction, please visit our auction homepage at <>. You can even add items to your cart to access them easily at a later time. Don’t miss this opportunity to show the special people in your life that you care, while supporting the work of the NFB at the same time.

If you’re looking for a special getaway, we have vacation packages to Puerto Rico, South Carolina, and Illinois, just to name a few. If you’re looking for a unique experience, we have a Nevada helicopter tour and a Wisconsin boat tour. Moreover, we also have several exciting state-specific gift baskets and restaurant gift cards from which to choose. We truly have something for everyone.

In order for the auction to reach its full potential, we need your help. Inform your network of friends, family, and acquaintances of our Bid for Equality online auction, beginning on Black Friday, November 29, 2013, and concluding on Giving Tuesday, December 3, 2013, and encourage them to register and participate. The Future is in Your Bid. We appreciate your support.

ThruOurEyes Programming Guide:
The Northeast Chapter of the National Federation of the Blind of New Jersey established Thruoureyes on March 25, 2005. With hundreds of interviews conducted and thousands of podcasts and archives of the interviews available, we are making a difference. The baseball season has ended; however, you can still get the best sluggers on our WTOE radio.

WTOERadio/TV, at <>, is proud to announce its NFB Wednesday night line-up. WTOERadio/TV has scheduled a series of broadcasts not to be missed, so mark your calendar and tune in for its NFB live streamcast each Wednesday night at 8:00 PM eastern time.
Here is the line-up of our NFB sluggers:

About WTOERadio Network programming
The WTOERadio/TV Network supports broadcasts devoted to entertainment, education, and health issues tailored to the needs of the blind and visually impaired. A loyal and vibrant community of sighted people find value in this programming as well.

Following are various options for accessing and listening live to these broadcasts:

We look forward to having you join us live, but, if you can't listen or view as programming airs, you can subscribe to the podcasts by the following links: subscribe to audio podcasts: <>. Subscribe to video podcasts at <>. Happy listening and viewing.

Syracuse Chapter Election:
The Syracuse chapter of the NFB of New York held elections at its September meeting, and here are the results: president, Lucy Marr; vice president, Melissa Thomas; secretary, Don Marr; and treasurer, Linda Webb.

Bloomington/Normal Chapter Election:
On September 13, 2013, the newly organized Bloomington/Normal chapter of the NFB of Illinois was organized. Elected to serve as its chapter officers are the following: president, Cary Supalo; vice president, Charles Smith; secretary, Courtney Hummel; treasurer, Janet Shobe-Smith; and board member, James Dunnington.

The National Federation of the Blind of Iowa held its annual state convention over the weekend of October 4 to 6 at the Adventure Land Inn in Altoona. It was a real treat to spend the weekend with Dr. and Mrs. Maurer. The Federation spirit is definitely alive and well in Iowa. Our very first Diabetes Action Network and At Large Chapter annual meetings were held and were a real hit.
The following people were elected to two-year board positions: Karen Clayton, Eugene Kleinow, Cindy Ray, and Sandi Ryan. David Hammel was elected to serve the remaining year as treasurer to fill the vacancy created by the resignation of our previous treasurer, who found a different job in New Mexico.

On September 24 we received the following notice from Kathy Beachem of the Office of the Commissioner at the New Jersey Department of Human Services:

I am pleased to announce the appointment of Daniel Frye as the new executive director of DHS’s Commission for the Blind and Visually Impaired (CBVI). He will start on October 21, 2013. Daniel will fill the vacancy created by Vito DeSantis’ retirement last June.

Daniel comes to us from Maryland, where he served as a management and program specialist with the Rehabilitation Services Administration with the US Department of Education. There he was responsible for the national administration of the federal Randolph-Sheppard program and the Helen Keller National Center for Deaf-Blind Youth and Adults.

Prior to his employment with the US Department of Education, Daniel served in successive management positions on the national staff of the National Federation of the Blind and as national advocate for the Association of Blind Citizens of New Zealand.

Daniel earned his juris doctorate at the University of Washington School of Law and his bachelor of arts degree at Erskine College in South Carolina. He is a certified mediator and has authored several publications and articles.

New Email Group for Beading Enthusiasts:
BeadingInTheDark is a new email group formed to discuss beading techniques, projects, supplies, and all things beading from a blindness perspective. Our primary focus is making beaded jewelry, but other beading projects are welcome for discussion. To subscribe, visit <>. For more information contact Lucy at <[email protected]>.

Earning Money Online:
My name is Marcia Baran. I'm looking for a way to earn some extra money online. I don't want to start a business. I have explored survey sites, and they are not blind accessible. Any suggestions are welcomed at <[email protected]>. My cell phone number is (860) 997-2234.

New Chapter:
James Brown, president of the NFB of Tennessee, reports that he traveled to Johnson City in August to establish the Northeast Chapter of that affiliate. They had a good mix of parents, blind children, teachers, and blind and sighted people at the first meeting, and they have already planned their first fundraiser to take place during Meet the Blind Month. Randy "Rooster" Atkins is the new president. Congratulations to the new chapter and to the Tennessee affiliate.

In Brief

Notices and information in this section may be of interest to Monitor readers. We are not responsible for the accuracy of the information; we have edited only for space and clarity.

New TSA Procedures at Airports:
Travel and Tourism Division President Cheryl Echevarria passes along the following information:
People who travel with dog guides or who have external medical devices they must take through security are often asked to step to the side after going through security, and their hands are checked for residue used in making weapons and bombs. We do not know why this is triggered by the use of dog guides, but we do know it applies to anyone traveling with pets and anyone who brings an external medical device through security. Cheryl notes that there is nothing here that singles out the blind.

Seedlings Braille Books for Children’s 2014 Catalog Now Available:
Seedlings is excited to announce that its 2014 catalog is now available, and fifty new book titles have been added, along with a new Braille puzzle.

The new book list includes everything from Animal Noises (a print-Braille picture book for toddlers) to Hunger Games Book 2: Catching Fire (a 500+ page Braille fiction book for young adults). The new books are listed on its website at <> and are ready to be ordered today.

Seedlings is also featuring the Chunky Shapes Puzzle with Braille by Melissa & Doug for just $9. Children can learn their shapes by playing with these fun, chunky puzzle pieces and by reading the names of the shapes that are printed on the board in print and Braille. The uncontracted Braille is laser-cut into the wood. Visit its website at <> and click on the "What's New" section!

If you would like to receive a print copy of the 2014 Seedlings catalog in the mail, please send your name and address to: <[email protected]> or call: 800-777-8552, or you can download the text file version from the website at: <>.

2013 Book Angel Program—Register Now:
Seedlings' Book Angel Program is open to visually impaired children who live in the US and Canada, and through this program each child can receive two free Seedlings books each year (you list four books from our catalog, and we will send two of them).

If you haven't registered yet in 2013, please visit Seedlings’ website at: <> and click on “Book Angel Program.”

Seedlings Braille Books for Children is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicated to increasing the opportunity for literacy by providing high-quality, low-cost children's literature in Braille. Volunteers, grants, and donations make it possible for us to offer our books at a fraction of the production costs, and prices have not been raised for over twenty-five years.

Monitor Mart

The notices in this section have been edited for clarity, but we can pass along only the information we were given. We are not responsible for the accuracy of the statements made or the quality of the products for sale.

New Voice-Command Internet Service:
Imagine accessing the Internet without a computer, when you are on the go, stuck in traffic, or just away from your computer. Sounds like science fiction? Not anymore, using InternetSpeech’s netECHO®, the only voice Internet service to give you access to the entire web, no computer needed. You can surf any website, listen and respond to your email, search any word, listen to music, and much more. Pretty much anything that you can do on a computer with a visual browser can now be done with any phone and your own voice. If you have a phone, you have access to the Internet, no computer needed. InternetSpeech brings Internet to you using the most natural user interface, your voice, and the most ubiquitous device, a simple phone, effectively bridging the digital and language divides.

Each plan starts with a one-time set-up fee of twenty dollars. Plan A gives you unlimited use for fourteen dollars per month. You simply call a toll number in the 408 area code. Plan B gives you five hours of use for $23 per month, five cents per minute for additional minutes (in the US and Canada), and you call a toll-free number to use the service. Plan C gives you unlimited use, and you call a toll-free number (in the US and Canada) for seventy-five dollars per month. Streaming audio is $6 extra.

For more information check out our website at <>. To learn more or sign up, call (877) 231-9286 or (408) 532-8460.

For Sale:
I am selling my Aladdin Personal Reader for $500 plus shipping costs, though I would be willing to negotiate a little on the price. It is an older model I bought for $1,795 new, but I have had it totally refurbished at considerable cost. The color settings on it are full color high contrast, full color photo mode, yellow on blue, green on black, amber on black, and white on black high contrast negative. It has a 14-inch screen. Contact me by phone at (631) 473-7194, or by email at <[email protected]>.


NFB Pledge

I pledge to participate actively in the efforts of the National Federation of the Blind to achieve equality, opportunity, and security for the blind; to support the policies and programs of the Federation; and to abide by its constitution.

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